San Mateo County Opts for a Regional Approach to Technology

In San Mateo County, Calif., we recognize that we must continuously leverage new technology to better engage with our residents, including providing more and better information and delivering our core services more effectively. Part of the mission of the Information Services Department (ISD, the technology department within the county) is to connect citizens both to each other and to their government.

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San Mateo takes smart solutions across city borders

I recently took part in a meeting with top IT executives from a number of local cities. Someone asked what a smart city actually was. Several people had ideas and suggested definitions, but we quickly realised that a universally-accepted explanation doesn’t exist–the concept of smart cities is still too new and too complex.

Personally, I believe a smart city is one that utilises sensors, data, and technology to improve the lives of residents and visitors. Other definitions vary in detail, scope, and emphasis. To many, this lack of a clear vision makes the idea of incorporating smart city technology intimidating. However, I believe it should be viewed as an opportunity. We are in the early days of a revolution; it is up to each of us to develop our own vision, strategy, framework, and roadmap.

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